Laura Gonzalez


12 Jan 2007

Chilhood memories


I have always had a soft spot for what other people might consider bad photographs. Call them errors, mistakes, mishaps, shakes, parapraxes, slips, forgetfulness, out-of-focus, wrongly lit, stupidity, lapsi… The thing is that, for me, they hold something of the moment that straight pictures, in all of their sanitised composion, don’t. Obviously, my point is that the unconscious speaks though them. I have rescued many of these over the years. I remember when photographs used to come in paper and my dad went through the set and chucked away those that were “bad”. More than once, after being put to bed but unable to get to sleep, I would get up and safe some of those photographs from eternal repression. “I am thirsty” ‚Äì I would say, if someone asked me what I was doing. The answer was not totally false. I was trying to understand.

Posted in Blog, Psychoanalysis

No Responses to “Chilhood memories”

  1. psychoa said:

    In going through old pictures recently, I found an interesting corollary to this. My favorites were those that –rather than being “bad” to begin with– had “gone bad.” Black and White Polaroids fading out with age; images missing bits where they had stuck to and been ripped apart from others; crumpled photos criss-crossed with creases. I especially liked the self-portraits that fell into this category. The unconscious speaks, indeed.

  2. Laura Gonzalez said:

    From your corollary to another one: Dick Jewell’s Found Photos, a self published book of photographs people had abandoned in passport photobooths all over England, as Jermynsavile reminded me. I can’t help picking up photos wherever I find them: on the street, crumpled and hanging out of rubbish bags, in the pages of library books… Sometimes, the unconscious even shouts.

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About Me

I am an artist and writer. My recent practice performance, film, dance, photography and text, and my work has been performed, exhibited and published in many venues in Europe and the US. I have spoken at numerous conferences and events, including the Museum for the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York, the Medical Museum in Copenhagen, College Arts Association and the Association for the Psychoanalysis of Culture and Society. When I am not following Freud, Lacan and Marx’s footsteps with my camera or creating performance works as part of my Athenaeum Research Fellowship at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, I teach postgraduate students at Transart Institute.

I am currently immersed in an interdisciplinary project exploring knowledge and the body of the hysteric. In 2013, together with Child and Adolescent Mental Health practitioner Frances Davies, I co-edited the book ‘Madness, Women and the Power of Art’, to which I contributed a work authored with Eleanor Bowen. My book ‘Make Me Yours: How Art Seduces’ was published by Cambridge Scholars in 2016. In this text, investigates psychoanalytic approaches to making and understanding objects of seduction, including an examination of parallels between artistic and analytic practices, a study of Manolo Blahnik’s shoes as objects of desire, a disturbing encounter with Marcel Duchamp’s last work, and the creation of a psychoanalytically inspired Discourse of the Artefact, a framework enabling the circulation of questions and answers through a relational approach to artworks.